Roz Wound Up Classes in February and May 2016

December 7, 2015


Above: 9 x 12 inch sketch of resting sheep at the 2015 Minnesota State Fair. (Sakura Pigma Sensei Pen and Schmincke pan watercolors.) If you would like to improve your ability to sketch live subjects in public join me for the 2016 Drawing Practice Class listed below.

As 2015 wraps up it’s time to start setting creative goals for 2016. I’d like to tell you about some online classes I have coming that might help you with those creative goals. 

If your goal is to improve your drawing skills and create a daily sketching habit while getting out more in public I encourage you to register for the 2016 drawing class.

If your goal is to learn to bind journals and sketchbooks that support your visual journaling or urban sketching think about the bookbinding class which follows.

Drawing Practice: Drawing Live Subjects in Public begins on January 31.

Registration for this class is now open. This link will also tell you additional information.

Each Monday and Thursday throughout February you will receive an invitation to a new lesson containing video demonstrations with handouts providing additional content and outlining daily drawing assignments. (Classroom will remain open for one year—until February 1, 2017. You will be able to review videos and classroom discussions.)

Watch a 2-minute video that discusses class content here. Remember in the 2016 session new lessons will come on Monday and Thursday.

You should expect to spend a minimum of 30 minutes drawing each day. Each week one or more of your drawing sessions will take place at a public location where you will seek out live subjects. The length of the videos varies from session to session, but you should plan for an additional hour of lesson time each Monday and Thursday.

The daily assignments are not prompts. My goal for this month-long class is to provide exercises and guidelines that will allow you to become an independent, self-starting sketcher who enjoys a rich, daily drawing habit.

To accomplish this goal, in addition to the skills and exercises presented, we will work together in the classroom to learn a new vocabulary and method for talking about your art. It’s part of the habit building. You’ll learn how to approach you drawing with a realistic and joyous eye.

At the same time I will present techniques for shutting up your internal critic. This is a critical step in enjoying a life-long drawing practice.

This class involves teacher participation. I will be active in the class each and every day in February. I will be looking at the drawings and questions that you post. I will be responding in the classroom and through additional email memos that expand on the current lesson.

Additionally there will be two live webinars. Students will be able to ask questions and be part of a live discussion. (Don’t worry if you live in a different time zone. The webinars are taped and can be viewed at the student’s convenience.)

I believe a daily drawing practice is an essential component of any creative life. You get in touch with your own unique abilities and learn to observe the world around you.

The first phase of class lasts for a month because it has been shown that habits can be built in 21 to 29 days.

But at the end of that month I will provide you with additional tools to work independently and to evaluate your progress so that you can set new goals.

And we will continue to check in with four more live webinars over the course of the year. I find that students tend to work a little harder if they know they are going to be held accountable. Also, I like to know how your daily habit is going.

The classroom and all the videos will remain open for a year from the class starting date. You will have plenty of time to review all the video demonstrations and classroom discussions.

If 2016 is the year you’ve decided to get serious about your drawing practice I encourage you to register for this class and take this journey with me.

You can complete this class with a pencil and bond paper, but if you want there is a PDF of suggested supplies linked at the registration page.

Note: This is the only time in 2016 that I will be offering this class. 


RoundBackSpineNoBorder copy 2Left: Examples of the Simple Round Back Spine book.

The Simple Round Back Spine begins on May 1, 2016.

Registration for this class is now open.

Whether you are just starting your journaling and sketching habit or you have been filling journals for years you’ve probably wished that you could make a lovely, elegant, sturdy journal with paper that holds up to your working methods, in a size you love. A structure that will open flat on a scanner!

In this detailed class I will take you through the creation of just such a journal. I will teach you about paper grain, tearing paper, punching sewing holes, folding and sewing your signatures, and every step of creating the book cover and casing in your text block. The videos show each step clearly. I provide explanations for the “why” behind my approach so that you can come to understand binding more completely. 

I will be active in class throughout May to answer your questions. This is an important class feature because students will work at their own pace. Some students finish a book in the first two days of class, others may work throughout the month on one book. You can decide when you want to work.

Class is geared toward the home bookbinder who does not have large presses and other expensive binding equipment. With only a few simple tools you can bind your own books.

For class purposes students will need to work with specific supplies so that I can ensure you learn the fundamentals and end up with a sound structure. But you are then encouraged to continue to make books throughout the year to solidify your knowledge. During that phase of class students often branch out into different sizes and different papers. I will continue to check the classroom during the year to answer questions and provide suggestions.

Additionally there will be four live webinars. Students will be able to ask questions and be part of a live discussion. (Don’t worry if you live in a different time zone. The webinars are taped and can be viewed at the student’s convenience.)

Classroom access to all the videos and classroom discussion lasts for one year from the class starting date. You will be able to review the tapes again and again as you continue to make books during the year. You will be building a durable skill.

I hope that you will join me to discover how fun and satisfying the binding process is. 

Note: While the Simple Round Back Spine book structure is totally suitable for collage work, if the majority of your visual journal work is collage, I would suggest that you wait until later in the year to take my Sewn-on-the-Spine Journal class. That book structure is perfect for the sketcher who needs a book that accommodates even dimensional collage. I wanted to give you a heads up that this upcoming class because I realize we all need to budget our money and our time.

Additional book structures will be featured in upcoming classes in 2016 and 2017.

    • Cathy Inzer
    • December 7, 2015

    Roz, I would love to sign up for your drawing class. My computer is old and will not scan things. Could I take a picture with my iphone and submit it?

    • Dana
    • December 8, 2015

    Roz! Is it true that your Simple Round Back Book Class for May is already filled and closed? I wanted to send the link to a friend who was so impressed with the books I made in this year’s class that he wants to take it in 2016. I just checked the link and Ruzuku claims the registration is closed. I hope it’s just a glitch and he could still sign up.

  1. Reply

    Dana, No, it’s not closed. Thanks for asking. I don’t know where that note is coming from. I had a student in the Drawing class write with the same problem. When I click on the links listed in this post I get to the registration page.

    I’ll ask Ruzuku what’s going on.

    Thanks for the heads up and for telling your friend about the class. He can definitely be in, ask him to check back on Friday it should be sorted out!


  2. Reply

    Dana, I don’t even have to wait for Ruzuku.

    They do this odd thing where you can close the class after registration, and you have to leave it open if you don’t want that, and it’s very confusing. Well it got left on close after class starts! Well it thinks it starts on day one. But that’s just the day registration opens.

    Such a deal.

    I was able to change it and now when you click on the link it will read open. And it will take your friend to this linked page

    So you can pass that along and he doesn’t even have to check back. I’ll post a note. about it.

    I don’t know why the drawing class did that though, because it wasn’t like this set up. HMMMMM. Too many blanks to fill in and buttons to push.

    Thanks for asking.


    • Dana
    • December 8, 2015

    Excellent Roz… thank you! Email with all appropriate links sent!

    It’s funny, we were just speaking about your class last Saturday evening and I thought he’d need to sign up for your class notifications. But then you announced these… Serendipity!

    • Maartje de Boer
    • December 28, 2015

    I’m so excited for this drawing class! I took the plunge and signed up! Ideal time in my life? I’m afraid not, but I don’t want to wait for ideal moments to draw, to be honest.

    But, I do have a question regarding the sketchbook: My current sketchbook is the Strathmore 500 series/mixed media paper – hard cover. I draw with microns, DeAtramentis ink, staedtler pigment liners, Faber castell markers and with all of them the ink dries so slowly (about 10 min). With Noodlers ink, it took almost a day. All my sketches are smudged and stained. Also, I have to fight sometimes to get something on the paper, especially when drawing with fountain pens. It takes watercolor and gouache very well, though. But then, only when the ink is really dry and has dried for at least an hour, otherwise, the ink will smudge.
    Is this normal behavior for this paper? I have bought those blocks of this paper and it seems like a total different paper. The paper in my sketchbook seems to be less smooth and is not really a pleasure to work on so far. While the mixed media blocks of strathmore are a delight! That was the reason I bought this sketchbook in the first place.
    Is the paper in the soft cover journal the same?

  3. Reply

    Maartje, I’m so glad you took the plunge, there is, as you say, never an ideal time, we just have to draw!

    I’m really surprised that you have trouble with inks drying in your Strathmore 500 Series MM paper journals—hard and soft. I use them and Staedtler Pigment lines, PPBP and Faber-Castell calligraphy and brush markers. I complete a sketch in under 10 minutes most of the time and go right to watercolor with no problems.

    I’m puzzled as to why this would be so. I wonder if you have a humid environment (perhaps a humidifier running if you’re in a northern climate and it’s winter?) I don’t know why your inks aren’t drying.

    The DeAtramentis, Microns and Noodlers I don’t use.

    I can tell you why the Noodlers takes longer, however, as my husband uses it. Noodlers is only permanent when it hits the cellulose fibers and if there is sizing on the paper that floats the ink (as wet media papers have) then it will take time for the ink to get through the sizing to the fibers and lock in. But that’s just Noodlers.

    I have friends with Microns and they are rock-solid dry in 2 minutes or less even on Arches WC which has lots of sizing.

    I’m not aware of 500 Series MM being sold in “blocks” so I am thinking that you’re purchasing 300 or 400 series Mixed Media from Strathmore (which do come in blocks and pads) and comparing that paper to the books.

    I do not find the blocks and pads of 300 or 400 series MM fun to work on either, for the most part. I do use them at life drawing for quick drawings. I do not in general recommend them and you can use my blog’s search engine to find my reviews covering them.

    The wirebound journals, hard bound journals, and soft covered journals from Strathmore all use the 500 Series MM and I’ve used all variations and they are the same.

    I think you are enjoying the 300 or 400 series in blocks and if so should keep using it and not buy any more of the books because as I’ve said, all the books have the same 500 series in them.

    You want to have something that you can work with the media you want to use, and that you enjoy working on, and paper likes and dislikes are totally personal because of the different ways in which people work.

    You can use any type of paper you want for class, and I suggested the 7.75 x 9.75 inch soft covered book because it is a perfect size and it is great with all the media I use with it.

    But it is by no means required and if you’ve got a hard covered one and don’t like the pages you’ll not like the soft covered one. It’s the same paper.

    I suggest that you find a journal paper that you enjoy working on. See my pages list in the left column and look for “Commercially bound journals.” That might be helpful.

    You can even simply work on bond paper or loose sheets of another favorite paper and keep things in a folder.

    I’m at a loss as to why the quick drying inks aren’t drawing on your page, when I can’t replicate that here.

    I’ll look forward to seeing what you decide to work on. Keep it to something you enjoy.

    • Mel
    • January 26, 2016

    Hello Roz,

    I love your sketches and would like to sign up for your class but I’m a little apprehensive because I have no experience whatsoever in drawing and I’m really terrible at it. I was wondering if this class is suited for an absolute beginner?


  4. Reply

    Mel, I’ve had students of all levels in my drawing practice classes. It’s really about where you start and learning some building block skills (or refreshing yourself on some skills if you’ve been sketching beforehand) and working to train how you see and how you can get it on the paper. As a complete beginner you might be frustrated by what some of the other students do, or depending on how things go for you, you might find things falling into place and progressing faster than students who come in with more skill.

    It can really go either way.

    What’s important is that the student show up willing and able to spend 30 minutes a day sketching for the month of February, with a couple longer sessions for sketching out (60 to 90 minutes). Also on Mondays and Thursdays in February a new lesson goes up and that’s about an hour of video you’ll need to have time for.

    Class is not about comparing your work to another’s, it’s about looking at where you are and letting me suggest ways for you to improve. And then it’s up to the student to put in the practice time.

    If you have trouble getting started in your drawing habit because of internal critic issues, or perfectionism, or resistance, etc. this class also goes into ways to deal with those things.

    I’m bias, but I think this is a great way for someone to start drawing because you can get your fundamentals in place and work productively and creatively. Sometimes with more advanced students there are more disruptive habits that have to be weeded out first.

    Only you can decide if you have the time and desire to put into this class this February, but I would love to help you on your drawing journey if you do decide to sign up. (I’ll offer the course again in 2017.) Thanks for asking about it. I’ll look forward to working with you at sometime!

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